Manslaughter charges dropped against M5 fireworks display organiser
By abbie_taunton | Tuesday, January 15, 2013, 15:39
All manslaughter charges against Geoffrey Councsell, the man in charge of a fireworks display held on the night of the 2011 M5 horror crash, have been dropped.
Geoffrey Counsell, 50, was charged with seven counts of manslaughter last year in connection with a massive crash on the M5 in 2011, in which seven lost their lives and 51 were injured.
He now just faces one charge, falling under the Health and Safety at Work Act, for failing to ensure the safety of others. He will face this at a later date.
Mr Counsell had been running a fireworks display at Taunton Rugby club, near the M5 motorway, when the tragic crash took place.
Senior Investigation Officer for the M5 collision, Detective Superintendent Mike Courtiour said: "The collision on the M5 in November 2011 was one of the worst in living memory. Fifty one people were injured and seven people tragically lost their lives. We launched a comprehensive investigation immediately after to establish the full circumstances which led to the collision.
"Our investigation was meticulous and complex. We took hundreds of witness statements, examined 34 vehicles and consulted several experts, including meteorologists, pyrotechnic and forensic specialists.
"Based on this evidence the Crown Prosecution Service took a decision to charge. However, following further consideration in recent weeks they have decided to discontinue the manslaughter charges."